I was shopping at my local grocery store when I did a double take at some odd looking fruit called Ugli fruit. I thought the name was hysterical, because in fact they were kinda ugly. They have an unsightly appearance with a rough and wrinkled, greenish-yellow rind.

They are larger than a grapefruit but not as firm. I just had to buy a few to see what they were all about. I juiced them all with the intention of making some margaritas for my Cinco de Mayo fiesta and after tasting it I was surprised at how remarkably juicy and sweet they were. The sweet juice of the Ugli fruit tastes similar to a tangerine. I got so much juice out of them which was perfect. My goal was to fill a huge pitcher with fresh margarita mix so I wouldn’t have to keep making cocktails all night long.

With the addition of the other citrus fruits, the combination of flavors was just the zing I was hoping for. I have to say this margarita recipe is by far my favorite. And after doing some research, I found that Ugli fruit is an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber and contain fewer than 40 calories, about the same as a grapefruit.

So rather than buying pre-made margarita mix full of sugar and preservatives, make your own healthy mix. And if you really wanna go the skinny route eliminate the addition of the simple syrup and the orange-flavored liqueur. Most margarita mixes are loaded with sugar—not to mention a long list of other ingredients you’ve probably never heard of.

Ugli fruit are in season from December to May, though their peak season is from January to April, with some occasionally being in stores from July to September. I’ve made this recipe more than once and plan to continue to make these delicious margaritas as long as Ugli fruit  are at my local grocery store.

Have you ever tasted Ugli fruit?

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Ugli Fruit Margaritas

Yield: 9 Margaritas

Ingredients:

½ cup sugar
1 cup water
Zest of 1 lime
2 limes juiced
Zest of 1 lemon
2 lemons juiced
2 oranges juiced
3 to 4 Ugli Fruit (also known as Uniq Fruit), juiced
1 cup tequila, preferably Reposado
1 cup Cointreau liqueur, Grand Marnier, or triple sec

Directions:

Combine the sugar and water and heat just long enough for the sugar to melt. Remove from the heat as soon as the sugar has dissolved.

Refrigerate the simple syrup and allow to cool completely before adding to the other ingredients.

In a pitcher combine simple syrup with the lime, lemon, orange, and Ugli juices and zest and refrigerate until flavors meld, 4 to 24 hours.

Add tequila and orange liqueur and stir.

Salt rims of glasses by rubbing rim with lime slice and dipping the rim into some margarita or kosher coarse salt.

Fill glasses with crushed ice and fill with the Ugli margarita mix.

Written by Yvette / Photos by Yvette